A creamy dip inspired by the flavors of traditional hummus made from parsnips and topped with a spicy chili oil.
Admittedly, during the winter months vegetable offerings can be sparser than most. Root vegetables are one of the few dependable items you’ll regularly find left standing at markets and grocery stores, amongst which you’re likely to happen upon parsnips.
Bearing a striking resemblance to carrots, parsnips boast a pale creamy white interior and a sweet flavor with a hint of spiciness that carrots lack. The smaller the parsnip the less fibrous and more tender they’ll be, so be on the lookout for the slender ones.
While I love them roasted simply with a smattering of herbs like rosemary or thyme, they also make an excellent creamy base for this “hummus” of sorts. I hesitate to call it hummus since the word itself means chickpeas and there are none to be found here, but rather mean to imply that it shares the qualities of the tahini based dip.
You quickly braise your parsnips on the stove along with the cumin and then process the mixture with the tahini and lemon juice until a smooth paste forms. Next comes a slow drizzle of water until a light, airy whipped texture results.
The outcome is a downright velvety dip or spread that gets better as it sits and the flavors mingle. A spicy finish of homemade chili oil finishes it off, adding a subtle bit of heat that plays well with the creaminess of the parsnips, not to mention some added metabolism boosting effects.
P.S. If you’re looking for something crunchy to serve with your dip, these crackers bake up quick.
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